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John Adams to George Washington Adams and John Adams 2d, page 1
3 May 1815

 

Quincy May 3rd. 1815

Dear George and John

     I adress myself to both of you as equally dear to me and because the difficulty with which I write, will not allow me to write seperately to each. Our anxiety for you and for your Father Mother, Brother, Uncle Aunt and little first and Second Cousin: have been greater than you can conceive. Some relief however We have received from Vessels you met at Sea, one of which brought a Letter from Mr. Ticknor to his Father and another from Mr. Everett to his mother, both agreeing that you were all well and you pursued your Studies as you ought. You have now been out Eighteen days and may be near the Port of your destination. You will find yourselves on your Arrival at Liverpool in a new World. Every thing will surprise you. Be upon your guard. Remember your youth and inexperience, your total Ignorance of the great World, be always modest, ingenuous, teachable, never assuming or forward, treat all People with respect; preserve the Character of youthful Americans, let nothing unbecoming ever escape your lips or your Behaviour. You have Characters to Support, Reputations to acquire; I may Say, you have the Character of your Country, at least of its Chil[d]hood and youth to Support.

     I could have wished that you Should have read before your departure Dr. Watts's Improvement of the Mind and even Mr. Lock's
  

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